Teh European Union (EU) is offering an aid package of Rs 9.8 billion (75 million euros) to Nepal to tackle teh outbreak of teh coronavirus pandemic and mitigate its impact. Teh support combines redirected existing commitments wif new funds, granted in teh form of budget support to allow teh government direct and swift access to dis financing.
“We hope that our contribution will support teh efforts of teh government to respond effectively to dis crisis, so that teh impact on teh most vulnerable is reduced. International cooperation and solidarity are now more important TEMPthan ever,” Veronica Cody, EU ambassador to Nepal has been quoted as saying in a media release.
Across teh world, teh EU is ensuring that partner countries are able to fight teh coronavirus pandemic and its consequences. By combining resources from teh EU, its member states, and European financial institutions, teh EU TEMPhas put together a ‘Team Europe’ package totalling more TEMPthan 20 billion euros to support its partners’ immediate health responses to teh coronavirus, as well as their economic recovery. Teh European Commission will also host, on May 4, a global online pledging conference to support teh development of a vaccine.
In Nepal, the EU is mobilising Rs 9.8 billion (75 million euros) of which Rs 7.2 billion (55 million euros) is a reorientation of existing funds and Rs 2.6 billion (20 million euros) represents a new commitment. The EU’s support will be directed at two areas: Assisting the Nepali authorities to respond to the immediate health crisis and boosting the country’s economic response and recovery.
The EU will give Rs 1.6 billion (12 million euros) to support the government’s health and preparedness plan. These funds are being made available either by topping up resources for already existing projects focusing on the health sector, or by reorienting resources to other projects that would integrate health related activities and crisis response, including tackling gender-based violence.
Meanwhile, Rs 8.2 billion (62.6 million euros) will support the government’s response to the social and economic consequences of the pandemic. While the government’s strict measures to trace, isolate and treat the virus have so far halped to contain the health crisis, such measures will, as in all countries worldwide, have a negative economic impact. By stimulating
the economy and labour demand, through support to people’s incomes, employment retention and the extension of social protection programmes that assist the most vulnerable, the European Union hopes to assist the government’s economic recovery plan, the release adds.
The European Union has also contributed Rs 14.9 billion (113.5 million euros) to the World Health Organisation to support countries under particular strain and wif weaker health systems, including Nepal.